We conducted an online survey of the approximately 200 EM providers (attendings, fellows, residents, nurse practitioners, and physician assistants) affiliated with BrownEM. The survey asked providers which medical apps they had downloaded on their mobile devices and which apps they actually used on a regular basis. Ninety-nine providers answered the survey (response rate 49.5%); the distribution of respondents was 51% attendings, 33% residents/fellows, and 16% NPs/PAsThe results of the survey are presented below, categorized by type of mobile app. Most of the apps and resources described below are widely used and highly circulated throughout the emergency medicine community. Just as in consumer mobile health, we found that although many apps are downloaded, few are used on a regular basis; on average, BrownEM providers reported that they had six medical apps downloaded on their phone, but only regularly used two. Highlighted below are the apps that providers most frequently find themselves using in day to day practice. BrownEM has no financial ties to any of these applications or their developers.
Just in time resources (percent of respondents using the app)
When looking at the educational resources used in our department, there is one clear winner. EM:RAP is the go-to resource used by almost every single survey respondent. A few apps are featured below that may be worth investigating as they are fun, educational, and easy to use.
Educational resources (percent of respondents using the app)
Finally, multiple providers made suggestions for resources they find incredibly helpful but are not app based. Below is a compilation of some of the top websites, programs, resources, and organizational tools that help some of us keep it together.
Evernote – A could based platform for organizing notes, documents, and files across multiple devices.
Dropbox and Google Drive – Online cloud storage platforms that allow for the sharing of documents, images, files across computers and with other users. Essential tools for the modern EM provider.
Lexicomp – A comprehensive drug reference with information regarding dosing, efficacy, and adverse effects. Access is provided for free through Lifespan intranet. A mobile app is also available to download.
Podcasts – By now most folks have gotten a taste of the podcast life. Everybody has their favorites depending on their interests. A couple of podcasts that this author has found to be particularly high yield are:
- Pediatric Emergency Playbook – bread and butter PediEM cases and core content
- EMCRIT – Scott Weingart’s pride and joy, cutting edge stuff but lots of opinions
- UltrasoundPodcast – From scanning basics to literature reviews, they have it all
- FOAMCast – brings together the best of FOAM, new literature, and core content
- GEL Podcast – a new ultrasound podcast discussing the evidence behind scanning
- EM Basic – as the name implies, bread and butter EM basics
- ED ECMO – high tech critical care brought into the world of EM
BrownEM has recently taken the plunge into the podcasting world under the guidance of Dr. Gita Pensa. Check out the BrownEM podcast here.
Twitter – with thousands of EM docs tweeting daily, there is a niche interest for everybody in the FOAMed (Free Open Access Medical Education) Twitter-verse. Critical care, airway management, wellness, education, sex and gender, ophtho, anesthesia – you name it, and somebody is tweeting about it. **Buyer beware, the veracity of some tweets cannot be guaranteed**
Blogs – the online companions to many podcasts, twitter accounts, and residency programs. Great sources of information that usually have posts on relevant and interesting topics, with useful images, original content, and amazing references. The two most highly recommended by our providers are Life in the Fast Lane and Academic Life in Emergency Medicine.
Faculty Reviewer: Megan Ranney, MD